While I came to appreciate different sci-fi platforms such as Star Wars, the Marvel universe (particularly the Guardians of the Galaxy movies), the DC Comics stable of superheroes, to name just a few, my first love when it comes to science fiction is the brainchild of Gene Roddenberry - Star Trek.

While I would not consider myself a "closet" science fiction fan, neither do I wear my infatuation for the sci-fi realm on my shirt sleeve. But on occasion, while out and about in the real world, I will slip up and allow my true colors to show.

One such example of this occurred last week. When I entered the office of the parks and recreation department at city hall I walked in on a conversation between Jenna McDonald, aquatics director, and Andy Dorian, parks department director, regarding the shirts that will be worn at the aquatic center this coming season. The discussion centered around how they can make it so the public can differentiate between the shirts worn by supervisors and those of general staff members.

I can't begin to explain what possessed me to open my yap, but suffice to say I felt inclined to offer, "Just don't put them in red shirts because we all know what happens to people wearing red shirts."

My comment was in reference to the Star Trek franchise. The running joke for the longest time among Star Trek fans was that anyone these duties entailed wearing a red shirt stood a better-than-average chance of being sucked out into space through a hull breach, possessed by an alien consciousness or vaporized by a phaser before the second commercial break.

Although neither Andy or Jenna are even remotely old enough to have watched the original Star Trek series when the episodes first appeared in the 1960s, as I must confess to have done, Andy laughed and nodded as if he caught my reference. All hail the power of the rerun.

While I came to appreciate different sci-fi platforms such as Star Wars, the Marvel universe (particularly the Guardians of the Galaxy movies), the DC Comics stable of superheroes, to name just a few, my first love when it comes to science fiction is the brainchild of Gene Roddenberry - Star Trek.

As I mentioned previously my Star Trek roots run deep, dating back to the days when James T. Kirk was played by William Shatner, Spock by Leonard Nimoy and Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy by DeForest Kelley.

Not only did I watch the original TV series, but each of the subsequent Star Trek movies. I also loyally viewed each of the spinoff Star Trek TV series, plus the movies they inspired. I have even embraced the reboot of the Star Trek franchise in multi-million dollar movie productions, which has featured new actors playing the beloved roles of Kirk, Spock and McCoy.

The appeal of science fiction no doubt varies from person to person. For some it might be the allure of what life would be like with some sort of special ability or power. For others the ability to fly among the stars might be the attraction.

One thing that all science fiction fans understand is that the super abilities and majority of the high-tech gadgetry are the products of someone's imagination. But occasionally, a sci-fi fact will prove to have its basis in the world you and I live in. Such a fact came to my attention this past week when the scientists studying what happens to the human brain at death cited a 1988 episode of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" for being on target with its explanation of what was happening as one of the show's characters, who was no doubt dressed in red, lay dying following an encounter with an evil alien creature.

Scientists believe that the show's researchers likely took brain observations seen in animals, which date back to the 1940s, and simply assumed that they would apply to human beings, which as it turns out they do

It doesn't matter to me as much how it was right as is the fact that Star Trek got it right. Maybe there are more facts from the Star Trek universe that are waiting to be found to be true that might help us in the 21st Century to live long and prosper

The views expressed in this column are not necessarily those of the Courier-Post.